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Public Lands and Garden Spaces Connect You To Nature

native plant sanctuary sign
(Image: VPM)

Host Peggy Singlemann talks to Michael Lott at Crow’s Nest Natural Area Preserve about the unique biodiversity preserved there and learns more about the Department of Conservation and Recreation’s Natural Heritage Program.


Co-Host Keith Nevison visits Boxerwood Nature Center and Woodland Garden to explore the representative ecosystems on display, and learn about their educational mission.

Kevin Heffernan, Stewardship Biologist for the Department of Conservation and Recreation, visits the Virginia Home Grown set to show some examples of invasive plants threatening our ecosystem and give tips on how to remove them.

Invasive plants presented by Kevin Heffernan:

  • Autumn olive / Elaeagnus umbellata
  • Chinese privet / Ligustrum sinense
  • Amur honeysuckle / Lonicera maackii
  • Japanese knotweed / Reynoutria japonica
  • Garlic mustard / Alliaria petiolata
  • Lesser celandine / Ficaria varia 
  • Italian arum / Arum italicum 
  • Wavyleaf grass / Oplismenus undulatifolius

For more resources on these invasive plants, visit Kevin's blog.

Brain Trader, CEO & President of Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, stops by to show off some of his favorite native plants.

Native Plants presented by Dr. Brian Trader:

  • Mountain azalea /  Rhododendron canescens
  • Virginia saltmarsh mallow /  Kosteletzkya virginica
  • Lanceleaf loosestrife /  Lysmachia lanceolata var. purpurea  
  • Winecup / Callirhoe involucrata
  • Appalachian blazing star / Liatris microcephala
  • Yellow trillium / Trillium luteum
  • Dwarf crested iris / Iris cristata ’Tennessee White’
  • Slender goldenrod / Euthamia caroliniana
  • Sensitive fern / Onoclea sensibilis
  • Woodland phlox / Phlox divaricata ‘Blue Moon’
  • Bitter panicgrass / Panicum amarum ‘Dewey Blue’
  • Trumpet honeysuckle / Lonicera sempervirens ‘John Clayton’

Dr. Robyn Puffenbarger explains that when bees and other pollinators emerge in the early spring it is important to have a source of nectar ready.

Allison Hurst  explains that even though drawing a garden plan might seem like extra work, it is worth it in the end.